So I've come to a couple decisions as far as distributions are concerned. The two decisions that I've come to are that: A. I do not want all the fluff of a general purpose computer running on my recording device and B. I still want a general purpose computer. As such, I'm going to run two separate installs, one for general purpose and one for Audio. This should be simple enough to do, and, while I'm in the general purpose one, I can still do some audio work, just not as extreme as the audio one.
As of right now, I'm thinking Sabayon for the GP install and Gentoo for the audio one. Of course, I'm not 100% on that yet, I still would like to play around with Debian and a couple other distributions that have similar mentalities to Gentoo (build your system to your liking). I'd also like to try Ubuntu, if only to see this new Unity interface that I've heard so much about, and I'm going to see how SuSE holds up these days (last I used it, I was moderately impressed but there were still things that just didn't feel right), but I'll take suggestions for others.
Regardless, I wish I could just run things in the real world, not virtualized, but my system currently isn't capable of wiring up that way. I could probably come up with a good ole "hardhack" style solution, which I may do sooner rather than later.