I got my sound back to the state I had had it for years.
I changed to kernel-3.8.11 in B045 64bit.
Removed alsa-lib, *-oss and *-utils.
Reinstalled again all 3, rebooted and no more muzzled sound.
That might confirm my suspicion that with kernels 3.9/10.* something
is not right as for sound on my desktop PC.
This problem is not only in VL and I solved it the same way in slackel.
There installing kernel 3.8.8.
Linux vector.linux.net 3.8.11 #1 SMP Fri May 3 03:09:32 EDT 2013 x86_64 Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU
E5400 @ 2.70GHz GenuineIntel GNU/Linux