After quite a bit of mucking around I can thoroughly recommend
for both playing audio cds and for listening to streams. This software
really pushes the alsa drivers hard and it shows with a good soundcard
(I have an Audigy 2). I found that it sounds heaps better than gnome-cd
when playing audio cds.
I compiled it from source and installed using checkinstall however I have seen it
in hoary universe as well (alsaplayer-alsa).
To play an audio cd open up alsaplayer from the console (or whatever) and click
the bottom left hand icon. The drop down menu allows audio cd playing.
To play audio streams in firefox associate pls files with alsaplayer (forgot how to do this at present . Works wonderfully for me...