Friday night belonged to The Stranglers.

In possibly the most genteel of settings the gnarled old punks have ever performed, the foursome's 90-minute hits package was impeccable.

Who would have believed that more than 40 years into their career the veterans, led by singer Baz Warne and powerhouse bassist Jean Jacques Burnel and with keyboardist Dave Greeenfield beavering away in the background, would still be performing Peaches in a garden.

But the non-compromising meninblack must be mellowing a little as Warne was chatting with the crowd, a clap along was encouraged and, amazingly, a smile even crept across Burnel's face on occasions.

The classics kept on coming with Hanging Around, Walk On By, Five Minutes, Something Better Change and Duchess rounded off with No More Heroes....and the band was gone. As usual, no encore. Excellent.

Dorset-based Simon Emmerson's 10-piece collective Afro Celt Sound System, despite sound problems, delivered an effervescent set of global tunes to keep everyone dancing.

Hidden gems today included soloist Cosmo Sheldrake whose songs featured recordings of Bulgarian goats, Welsh slates being smashed and the sun rising. Sounds bizarre, was bizarre, but kind of worked.

Folky, bluesy, all-girl fivesome Dana Immanuel & The Stolen Band filled the huge Arc tent with their swamp rock songs and covers, concluding with a rousing version of Elvis's Viva Las Vegas.

And then there was an impromptu performance by this festival's heroes the beatrapping Antipoet duo in the food tent, augmented at times by the Southampton Ukulele Jam.

It's unexpectedly delightful things like this that make Larmer Tree what it is.

Cliff Moore